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Title XI anniversary
WSU student played key role in athletic equality
Monday, June 18, 2012
Karen (Blair) Troianello '80 and her classmates won Blair v. Washington State University, a landmark women's rights case that changed the way Washington's public colleges and universities support women's athletics. Photo by Robert Hubner, WSU Photo Services.
PULLMAN, Wash. - Karen Troianello, from 1976-80, was a member of the WSU women's track and field team one of only five women's varsity sports at the time and she was a passionate advocate for women's sports.
Better known by her maiden name Karen Blair, she helped bring equality into college athletics. Blair was the plaintiff in the landmark Blair v. Washington State University lawsuit in 1979 that forced greater gender equity in college athletics. This month marks the 40th anniversary of Title IX, federal legislation signed into law June 23, 1972, that prohibits sex discrimination in education.
It took the Blair case, years later, to set the wheels of equality in motion.
At WSU, the University of Washington and other colleges around the country, it meant there would be no more hand-me-down uniforms, no more car caravans to competitions while male athletes rode team buses or planes. Fewer inferior facilities and more full-time coaches. More first-rate opportunities and scholarships instead of second-class treatment.
Read the rest of the article about the Blair case and see a video with her lawyer in The Seattle Times. A separate article on the Blair case can also be found at Washington State Magazine.